The OCLC Research Library Partnership
SHARES Sharing Special Collections Working Group
The OCLC SHARES Sharing Special Collections Working Group invites the SHARES community to begin implementing the Principles and Protocols for Sharing Special Collections through Interlibrary Loan between SHARES members. The Working Group encourages local discussions among interlibrary loan practitioners, special collections curators/staff, administrators, digitization units, mailroom personnel, as well as other local stakeholders.
With the support of the SHARES Executive Group, The Working Group will convene a series of webinars in October, November, and December 2022, walking through step-by-step preparations to begin borrowing and lending special collections materials according to the Principles and Protocols.
These webinars will be open to staff at any SHARES member institution. Interlibrary loan practitioners, special collections curators/staff, administrators, digitization units, mailroom personnel, and other local stakeholders with an interest in sharing and stewarding collections are highly encouraged to attend.
- Implementing the SHARES Sharing Special Collections Principles and Protocols: Overview
October 18, 2022
Principles and protocols
Checklist for sharing special collections through ILL
- Sharing Special Collections: Scanning Portions and Whole Works
November 10, 2022
Lending scans of small portions—workflow template
Lending scans of entire works—workflow template
The SHARES Sharing Special Collections Principles and Protocols are meant to reflect the SHARES philosophy of liberal lending policies which promote access, enrich research, and support a collaborative environment between partner libraries. The purpose of the Principles and Protocols is to establish common expectations among SHARES libraries when requesting or supplying special collections materials while also allowing flexibility and customization within local workflows. The Protocols address:
- scanning articles/chapters from special collections works;
- digitizing entire out-of-copyright works; and
- borrowing, lending, and packaging selective physical items from special collections.
Participation in sharing special collections through interlibrary loan will be voluntary among SHARES members, but the Principles and Protocols will govern the process for both requesting and supplying libraries. Interlibrary loan is defined as obtaining material as a copy or loan for a requesting individual's own personal research and excludes materials obtained for exhibition loan. Special Collections include rare, distinctive, and/or valuable items of any format that are under controlled access and separate from a library's general circulating collection.
These Principles and Protocols are informed by the ACRL/RBMS Guidelines for Interlibrary and Exhibition Loan of Special Collections Material, the Big Ten Academic Alliance Principles and Protocols for Interlibrary Loan of Special Collections Materials, the OCLC Research Report Tiers for Fears: Sensible, Streamlined Sharing of Special Collections, and information gathered from the SHARES community in a 2019 survey regarding members' current practices.
Libraries are increasingly comfortable lending legacy formats such as A/V, microforms, or bound serials through interlibrary loan. However, sharing of special collections materials via interlibrary loan remains a challenge for many due to concerns about the safety of the material, workflow, approval processes, and other issues.
The SHARES Sharing Special Collections Working Group was formed in September 2018 to explore the interlending of materials from special collections among members of the SHARES resource sharing consortium. This working group came into being as an outcome of the 2018–2019 SHARES Policy Rethink’s third theme, Enhancing Access.
In keeping with the SHARES philosophy of liberal lending policies and supporting a collaborative environment among partner libraries, this working group’s goals are:
- To gather information on the current state of sharing special collections through interlibrary loan across SHARES;
- To promote the sharing of special collections materials among SHARES libraries through interlibrary loan; and
- To develop a framework of sharing protocols that will establish common expectations among SHARES libraries when borrowing or lending special collections materials.
- To work with SHARES members and the SHARES Executive Group to implement that framework
The fourth and final goal remains to be accomplished.
The major deliverables have been the Principles and Protocols and supporting documentation, a 2021 webinar presenting the draft principles and protocols to SHARES, and a report and webinar on the results of a 2019 survey of SHARES partners regarding their policies and workflows around sharing special collections.
Protocols and supporting documents
- Principles and Protocols
- Checklist for sharing special collections through ILL
- Lending scans of small portions—workflow template
- Lending scans of entire works—workflow template
- Borrowing physical loans—workflow template
- Lending physical loans—workflow template
- Packaging and shipping—workflow template
Working group membership
Brian Miller (Chair)
Head, Interlibrary Services
Ohio State University Libraries
Head of Interlibrary Loan
Frick Art Reference Library
Head of Document Services
Jacob Burns Law Library
George Washington University
Art, Architecture and Design Librarian
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Chela Scott Weber
Senior Program Officer
OCLC Research Library Partnership
Senior Program Officer
OCLC Research Library Partnership